Bookmark and Share
Online Dating Magazine > Online Dating News > Online Dating Bill

Technology Leaders Express Concern Over Online Dating Bill in Florida

( - April 27, 2005) America's leading Internet and technology firms and trade associations today expressed deep reservations over a proposed Florida bill that would impose government oversight on online dating, and would require criminal background checks or disclosures for users of online dating services. In a letter to the Florida legislature, the group noted that the bill's overly broad and vague language would impose new liabilities and responsibilities upon not only Internet dating sites, but on an almost limitless array of Internet sites and services having nothing to do with dating. Even more importantly, the group continued, the legislation, sponsored by Rep. Kevin Ambler (R-Tampa) and Sen. Victor Crist (R-Tampa), has the potential to create a false sense of security for users of such services as background check methodology is usually incomplete, incorrect and easily circumvented.

"As some the country's most popular Internet and technology companies, we are incredibly committed to keeping our users safe, and that extends to online dating services," said Markham Erickson, a spokesman for the NetCoalition, whose members participated in the letter. "But if only 15 of 67 Florida counties provide felony information, and recent news reports indicate that national criminal databases similar to the one required by this legislation can have a roughly 40 percent error rate, all this bill will do is mislead and misinform Florida consumers."

Although there have been very few, if any, instances of online dating- related crimes in Florida, the legislation would require background checks or, in the alternative, disclosures that the services do not screen customers, for a broad array of Internet companies including email providers, search engines, chat rooms, community bulletin boards, and job sites. It does not provide adequate exceptions for Internet service providers, hosting companies, and other Internet companies providing purely access functions for their users.

"Unfortunately, this bill would throw the proverbial baby out with the bathwater," continued Erickson. "By imposing government regulation on a wide swath of Internet companies, you end up hurting the Internet instead of the criminals."

Interestingly, the bill does nothing to address similar concerns with offline dating companies, where customers are just as likely to be concerned with the backgrounds of potential suitors. Not only are there far more offline dating services than their online counterparts; arguably, online dating services are safer than off-line companies because members can interact with each other on their computers in their own homes without having to physically interact with other members until they feel it is safe to do so.

Even if these problems could be remedied, the group concluded in the letter, the companies continue to believe that the marketplace is best positioned to address the issues identified by the sponsors of the legislation. Already, at least one Internet dating site advertises that all of its members are screened through a criminal database. Other dating sites promote different tools that are advertised as protecting the privacy and identity of users until certain precautions are met.

"Consumers are in the best position to determine which services provide them with the most security and comfort," concluded Erickson, "not the government."

> - The best approach to find the one. <

All Online Dating Magazine content, including the content on this page,
is © copyright by Online Dating Magazine and may not be
republished or reused in any form. You do have
full permission to link to this article.

Do you agree or disagree with this article? Have
more to add? Submit a Letter to the Editor today or post a comment below.


blog comments powered by Disqus

Privacy Statement | Code of Ethics Statement
Bookmark Online Dating Magazine at

>View Online Dating Magazine Singles Travel Adventures<

Online Dating | News | Columns | Features | Dating Services | Niche Dating
Online Dating Directory | Dating Humor | Quick Tip Articles | Online Dating Industry
Industry History
| Online Dating Reviews | Reader Reviews | Dating Videos | Book / DVD Reviews
Reader Letters | Self Improvement | Experiences | Newsletter | Interviews
Top 10 Lists | STD Info Center | About Us | Advertise
Media Center
| FAQ | Search | Contact | Dating Promotions

Dating Cartoons | Dating Jokes | Funny Dating Videos | Dating Games

Online Dating Magazine Needs Your Help!

All content on this Website is ©copyright by Online
Dating Magazine. All Rights Reserved. The content
on this site may not be reused or republished.

Are you an online dating site Webmaster? If so...
If you are looking for free dating content you can republish, click here



Advertise on
Online Dating Magazine



Stay Up to Date:

Follow Us on Twitter

Follow Us on YouTube

Follow Us on Facebook


10 Most Viewed Articles:

Online Dating Tips
Opposites Attract
Online Dating Safety Tips
Rose Colors
Guys are Weird
Dating Games
Online Dating Reviews
Creative Date Ideas
Long Distance Relationships
Dealing with a Breakup

Other Resources:

These links will take you away from Online Dating Magazine.

Google (Google Your Date)
Research Dating Service)

MailOrderBride Guide

Note: Online Dating Magazine does not sell text links anywhere on the site, so please don't email asking about text links. Any links we have are affiliate links, resources we find useful, links to other sites we run or long-time magazine sponsors. We do have graphic ad options in our Advertising section.